polyphenol

Ladies & Gentleman, Bring Out The Blender

I don’t think I have ever said no to a green smoothie before – have you?  In today’s blog I’m going to go over the main reasons why getting in a green smoothie every once in a while is a good thing. I also have a few recipes I’d like to share along the way.

First of all, a green smoothie is, as the name suggests, green in color. I love this because it is soothing in color, and also nutritious as hell! With all the goodness of spinach, kale and many other leafy greens combined, these types of smoothies can help ensure you’re getting a nutrient-rich diet that supplies the body with all the necessary vitamins for skin care, mental care, and general well-being of your body. We’ll dive further into the green smoothie benefits in just a moment, but first…

Let me share my own green smoothie recipe

This is one of my favorites, because it’s fast, easy, super-yummy and keeps me fueled until my next meal.

Ingredients
1 Bunch Chopped Kale Bunch (about 2-3 cups)
1/2 Avocado
1 Banana (not too ripe!)
2 Kiwi’s
2 Scoops Collagen Fuel – Primal Kitchen
1 Tbsp Crunchy Peanut Butter
1 cup Almond Milk
Add a cup of ice for thickness

Just add ingredients to the blender, whip it up, and enjoy!

Now that you’ve got your green smoothie in-hand, let’s explore why this is so great for us…

Why make a smoothie?

Let’s face it, sometimes we just aren’t interested in eating a whole plate of veggies or we simply don’t have the time.  The point of green smoothies is to help you cram all the nutrients, vitamins, fiber and polyphenols of your daily vegetables into a drink.

What are Polyphenols?

Most of us are familiar with the vitamins and minerals listed on all food labels, but many may not know about polyphenols. In brief – Polyphenols are micronutrients/phytochemicals (chemicals found in plants) that we get through eating certain plant-based foods. They improve digestion, fight aging and reduce disease. You can learn more about the power of polyphenols here.

To maximize your polyphenols benefit, you must look at both the bioavailability (how much polyphenol is in a particular food) and the bioaccessibility (how much of those polyphenols your body can actually absorb and use) of these chemicals in your diet. Basically, you want to maximize the amount of easily-digestible polyphenols you eat on a regular basis.

 

Food Ingredient

Polyphenols
(mg per 100g)

Cloves

15,188

Cocoa Powder & Dark Chocolate

3,448

Black Chokeberry

1,700

Black Currants

758

Blueberries

560

Hazelnuts

495

Pecans

493

Plums

377

Sweet Cherries

274

Blackberries

260

Artichokes

260

Strawberries

235

Red Raspberries

215

Chicory

166-235

Almonds

187

Red Onions

168

Apples

136

Spinach

119

Black Beans

59

White Beans

51

Walnuts

28

Black Tea

102mg per mL

Green Tea

89mg per mL

Red Wine

101mg per mL

Rose & White Wine

10mg per mL

Sometimes even making a smoothie can be tough, especially if we haven’t had time to shop for fresh veggies. In cases like these, don’t be afraid to turn to polyphenol supplements, such as Atrantil and Energybits.

At the end of the day, whether it’s a salad, smoothie or a supplement, it doesn’t matter how you get your polyphenols just as long as you get them in!

Now that you’re caught up on polyphenols, you may be wondering why we added collagen to our smoothie…

The Collagen Matrix

Collagen is the major component of connective tissue (including tendons, ligaments, skin and muscles) making it one of the most abundant (and necessary) proteins in the body. An important collagen function is in providing your skin with structure, as well as strengthening your bones, which is one reason it has become so commercially popular in recent years. Most collagen supplements are hydrolyzed, which means the collagen has been broken down and made easier for you to absorb.

Science-backed collagen health benefits include:

  • Helps improve skin health: Several studies have shown that collagen peptides or supplements containing collagen may help slow the aging of your skin by reducing wrinkles and dryness. [1]
  • Helps relieve joint pain: Some studies have shown that taking collagen supplements may help improve symptoms of osteoarthritis and reduce joint pain overall. [2]
  • Could prevent bone loss: Studies have shown that taking collagen supplements may have certain effects in the body that help inhibit the bone breakdown that leads to osteoporosis. [3]
  • Could boost muscle mass: Researchers have suggested that taking collagen may promote the synthesis of muscle proteins like creatine, as well as stimulate muscle growth after exercise. [4]
  • Promotes heart health: Collagen provides structure to your arteries, which are the blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body. Without enough collagen, arteries may become weak and fragile. [5]

Collagen Supplements vs. Foods

Before worrying about what foods contain collagen, more research is needed to determine whether eating collagen-rich foods helps increase collagen in your body. There have not been any human studies on whether collagen-rich foods have the same benefits as supplements. Digestive enzymes break down the collagen in food into individual amino acids and peptides that your body can utilize. However, the collagen in supplements has already been broken down, or hydrolyzed, which is why it’s thought to be absorbed more efficiently than the collagen in foods. Several foods contain collagen, including animal foods and bone broth. However, its absorption is not as efficient as that of hydrolyzed collagen. 

I personally swear by Primal Kitchen’s Collagen Fuel and have been using it for many years. After just 7 days on the product, my skin and hair start to glow.  It’s fantastic!

The Last Drop

And there you have it!  In the time it took to read this article, you’ve probably been able to make -and hopefully enjoy- your full daily dose of green vegetables, and gain a better understanding of how turning them into a smoothie can be a delicious and extra-nutritious part of your day.  

Let me know how you liked the recipe, and feel free to share your recipes, too!

Bonus: Go green, go lean

People often ask me things like “Are green smoothies healthy?” (yes, absolutely!) and “Can you lose weight with green smoothies?”  Yes, when combined with a balanced macro whole-foods diet, the benefits of these micro ingredients can play a more substantial role in achieving weight-loss, while also improving and supporting your overall health. You should never substitute one class of food over the other. Your diet must always contain a wide range of whole-foods, the quantities are what we can manipulate based on what goals we are after.

As always, speak with your physician before making any drastic changes to your diet to be sure you won’t have any conflicts with any medications or other pre-existing conditions.


Here are some other Smoothie Recipes for you to enjoy:

Another Green Smoothie

“Skinny Smoothie”

“Flat-Belly Smoothies”

“Yummy Tummy Smoothies”

“Smooth Skin Smoothies”

“Hot Smoothies for Cool Days”

“Decadence!”


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Hana Zarour

Founder of Kaldzar
Movement Specialist; Specialist in Sports Nutrition, Exercise Therapy, Weightlifting Performance Coach.

Specialist in – Trigger Point Therapy, Crossfit, Animal Flow, TRX RIP, Kettlebell, Kineso Taping, Pre/Post Natal, 


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